MAG Helps to Improve Lives
We shared a little of what we trust is our mutual pride the other day as we sent off a “decent-sized” check to Mines Advisory Group (MAG) representing our 3% of sales from the Thanksgiving Weekend sale, as well as some direct donations from generous Eugenians. The essential and humane task of clearing unexploded ordnance (UXOs) continues at a pace matched only by the world’s donations and the Lao government’s dedicated, but under-funded, effort to free its people of the leftover horrors of war.
Over 35 years after the bombing has stopped, some innocent Lao person – perhaps a farmer with a plow, or a child discovering a shiny round metal ball – is still killed every other day by old ordnance. Cluster bombs are the worse culprit, as some 30% of the 100,000,000 bomblets the US dropped on this nation still lie, live, in the fields and jungle that is their backyard.
There is only one way to make this land safe. Wherever people live, the soil must be screened by metal detectors and then the explosives carefully exposed and safely detonated. The UXOs are not only a direct threat to life and limb, but also hinders Laos’ ability to carve a new road, dig a village site for a new schoolhouse, or develop infrastructure for tourism or business, keeping these talented and capable people in continuous poverty.
Now, long after the political crisis has dissipated, we must make amends and help clear the land of our dangerous detritus. Your donation, whether directly through MAG (www.maginternational.org) or through Above the Fray, helps Laos recover from its present crisis. And thank you, Oregon Senators Wyden and Merkley, for supporting the bill to eliminate cluster bomb munitions